Thursday, November 02, 2006

Car update

Ok I broke these posts tonight in half because they are really unrelated. Except for the fact the car has been overwhelming my brain. When I get obsessed with something, I can't very well stop until its done. And now its done!

Anyway, Megan's 1995 Saturn SL SOHC (I have told the parts store this so much that I know the tempo they like to hear it!).

I replaced that EGR valve (picture to the left) that cracked after it got in yesterday. No cracking this time. I also replaced its thermostat too. Thats two in less than one week! Any one else need one? It was not split in half, but it was stuck open. Now the temp warms up to just under half way and stays there.

I am convinced that Saturn's are designed to be the most difficult to repair possible. The alternator replacement this summer was a snap, besides the two hours it took to simply puzzle a way to remove it from the car (hint: remove the wheel, unbolt the alt. then turn it upside down and rotate it 90˚ to vertical and then rotate it 46.5˚ clockwise and it comes right out!). Same thing for the thermostat. It is located on the bottom hose of the coolant vs. the top of the Volvo. So I had to drain out the entire coolant system rather than just a cup full. But I didn't know I needed to drain all of it, and got about a gallon of it on my floor as a reward. And my tools just wouldn't fit. I had to try every combination of extender to get it off.

So how does it run? Well, not bad! I have been easing into it all week but tonight I finialy got to see what it had tonight. I was a little nervous because last time I did that the car freaked out, died, and had to be pushed to the repair shop. But guess what? It did good! If anything, I think it is getting better over time. Perhaps the computer needs to adjust to its new MAP sensor? The idle is still a little rough, and it still down shifts a second too early giving this strange engine breaking effect, but I would drive it!

The grand total here since may?
  • New spark plugs/wires
  • New Engine Coolant Temp Sensor (ECTS)
  • New Alternator
  • New Manifold Absolute Pressure sensor (MAP)
  • New Exhaust Gas Recirculation valve (EGR)
  • New Thermostat
  • Coolant flush x2
  • Transmission flush
Out of all that the pros only did the MAP and the transmission flush. So I figure if I pay my self $70 an hr for labor like they do... Well I guess thats the price of mechanics school!

Phew long post. But, here's to the hope that I won't have to post another one for a long time!

1 comment:

Lindsey said...

Wow Chris! I must say I am truly impressed with all that you've managed to do with your and Megan's cars! How exactly did you LEARN to do these things? Did you just read online or have a mentor or what? I don't need repairs yet, but I'm sure I will again in the future and it sure would be more cost efficient to do it myself!